Elevance selects URS to provide EPC services for Miss. plant

By Elevance Renewable Sciences Inc. | February 05, 2014

Elevance Renewable Sciences Inc., a high-growth specialty chemicals company, announced that it has selected URS Corp. to provide engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services for its second world-scale biorefinery in Natchez, Miss., ensuring the company remains on track to meet customer forecasts for its Inherent renewable building blocks in 2016.

“URS is a natural partner for us, and we’re looking forward to working together to advance our second biorefinery,” said Elevance CEO K’Lynne Johnson. “Just as our Inherent renewable building blocks are a breakthrough category of novel products that provide innovative solutions to multiple industries, URS brings an innovative approach to getting the job done.”

Under the contract, URS’ scope of work involves converting Elevance’s existing biodiesel plant into a new biorefinery.

“With our presence in Baton Rouge, near the site of the new biorefinery, URS is able to provide an EPC solution to Elevance that features a local, experienced team and proven construction delivery,” said Ken Martinez, URS vice president and general manager of process engineering. “URS’ expertise supporting clients worldwide with a variety of systems and processes makes us an ideal partner for Elevance’s latest biorefinery project.”

Elevance is the only specialty chemicals company that will have two world-scale biorefineries in operation by 2016. The Natchez project will be the second biorefinery based on Elevance’s proprietary metathesis technology. Commercial production is already underway at the company’s first biorefinery, an 180,000 metric ton joint venture with Wilmar International Ltd. located in Gresik, Indonesia.

The commercial-scale manufacturing facility in Natchez will produce novel specialty chemicals, including multifunctional esters such as 9-decenoic methyl ester; a unique distribution of bio-based alpha and internal olefins including decene; and a premium mixture of oleochemicals. It will have a capacity of 280,000 metric tons (approximately 617 million pounds).

The high-value performance specialty chemicals, olefins and oleochemicals produced at the company’s biorefineries will be used in personal care products, detergents and cleaners, lubricants and additives, engineered polymers, and other specialty chemicals markets.